(ACM Transactions on Graphics (Proc. ACM SIGGRAPH), 2001.)
Modern laser range and optical scanners need rendering techniques that can handle millions of points with high resolution textures. In this project we developed a point rendering and texture filtering technique called surface splatting which directly renders opaque and transparent surfaces from point clouds without connectivity. It is based on a novel screen space formulation of the Elliptical Weighted Average (EWA) filter. We extend the texture resampling framework of Heckbert to irregularly spaced point samples. To render the points, we develop a surface splat primitive that implements the screen space EWA filter. Moreover, we show how to optimally sample image and procedural textures to irregular point data during pre-processing. We also compare the optimal algorithm with a more efficient view-independent EWA pre-filter. Surface splatting makes the benefits of EWA texture filtering available to point-based rendering. It provides high quality anisotropic texture filtering, hidden surface removal, edge anti-aliasing, and order-independent transparency.